hab

The emergence of modern socialists

Throughout most of American history, the idea of socialism has been a hopeless, often vaguely defined dream. So distant were its prospects at midcentury that the best definition Irving Howe and Lewis Coser, editors of the socialist periodical Dissent, could

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DAYLIGHT LYNCHING OF ETHIOPIA BY THE DIRTY HIRED GUNS OF THE UN HRC, EXPOSED!

22 mins read

Law-book toting gunslingers of the new, new West

In the folklore of the American wild, wild West, cattle barons and mine owners would pay hired guns to come around and “take care of business.”

Oftentimes, they would pay hired guns (hit men) to rid outlaws the local marshals and sheriffs could not handle.

Occasionally, they would hire them as bounty hunters to track down outlaws and bring them back “dead or alive.”

In the cold realpolitik reality of the new new West of the Biden era, Post WW II, the old-time gun slingers are replaced by law-book-toting lawyers and arrogant and self-righteous gospel-of-human-rights-thumping paper tigers and dragons preaching fire, brimstone and damnation against “outlaw” African countries for a contract price.

The new, new West’s cattle barons and mine owners are called Joe Biden, Susan Rice (Princess of Darkness), Chris Coons, Gregory Meeks, Robert Menendez, Josep Borrell, Antonio Gutierrez and Co.

The new, new West’s gunslingers are not called Wyatt Earp, Stagecoach Mary or Belle Starr.

They are called Steven Ratner, Kaari Murungi, and Radhika Coomaraswamy.

Their job is to travel the world on behalf of the cattle barons and mine owners of the new, new West and bushwhack governments in developing countries using  human rights as a machete.

Ratner’s professional description posted on the University of Michigan Law School website recounts his decades-long exploits as an international hit/lawman chasing after all types of Cambodian and Sri Lankan government outlaws: war criminals, criminals against humanity, perpetrators of genocide, etc.

Ratner

began his legal career as an attorney-adviser in the Office of the Legal Adviser at the U.S. State Department. In 1998–1999, he was appointed by the United Nations (UN) secretary-general to a three-person group of experts to consider options for bringing the Khmer Rouge to justice; and in 2010–2011, he was a member of the UN’s three-person Panel of Experts on Accountability in Sri Lanka, which advised the UN Secretary-General on human rights violations related to the end of the Sri Lankan civil war… (Boldface added.)

Ratner has been a decades-long legal hitman for the State Department travelling to Cambodia, Sri Lanka and elsewhere in hot pursuit of alleged human rights outlaws.

As a member of the International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia (ICHREE), Ratner is reprising his role in Cambodia and Sri Lanka.

Indeed, it is not a big deal for him.

All he has to do is cut and paste the Cambodia and Sri Lanka “investigative” reports, substitute “Ethiopia” for the two countries and voila!

Another fine fictional human rights violations report on Ethiopia!

On March 2, 2022, Ratner’s Gang of 3 was appointed by the President of the Human Rights Council to investigate human rights violations in Ethiopia.

On March 11, 2022, Ratner represented the following incredible statement on the University of Michigan Law School website:

The whole world, and especially the US, knows the terrorist TPLF started the war!

On November 4, 2020, the day after the TPLF attacked Ethiopian federal forces in Tigray region, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo issued a statement making clear the U.S. position:

The United States is deeply concerned by reports that the Tigray People’s Liberation Front carried out attacks on Ethiopian National Defense Force bases in Ethiopia’s Tigray region on November 3. (Boldface added.)

Not only that, a top leader of the TPLF terrorist group explained how and why they started the war.

For translation, click here.

How Ratner would conduct his “investigation” and frame Ethiopia for human rights violations was clear nine days after his appointment to the expert panel.

Ratner had already concluded Ethiopia had started the war and announced it to the world.

His job was simply to selectively collect evidence to support his conclusion: “Ethiopia launched an attack on Tigray. Rampaging Ethiopian troops committed war crimes, crimes against humanity, rape, torture, etc. in Tigray.”

That is precisely what the September 19, 2022 ICHREE report concluded. (More on that below.)

Ratner and the Cambodia hit job

In 1998–1999, Ratner was appointed by the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon to a three-person group of experts to “consider options for bringing members of the Khmer Rouge regime to justice in Cambodia.”

Indeed, Ratner was instrumental in getting the UN General Assembly to pass a resolution asking the Secretary-General to consider “the possibility of the appointment of a group of experts” to look into human rights violations, war crimes, etc., in Cambodia.

Once appointed, Ratner’s group was given a triple mandate: (1) evaluate the existing evidence and determine the nature of the crimes committed; (2) assess the feasibility of bringing leaders to justice and (3) explore options for trials before an international or domestic court.

Ratner’s group also insisted the main source of evidence will be witness testimony. Any trial lawyer worth his salt knows, “eyewitness testimony is fickle and, all too often, shockingly inaccurate.”

Ratner’s group undertook its “investigation” in Cambodia and reported commission of various offenses under international law including genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, forced labor and  torture among others.

Ratner’s group recommended trials of suspects be confined to “those persons most responsible for the most serious violations of human rights in Cambodia including senior leaders with responsibility over the abuses as well as those at lower levels who are directly implicated in the most serious atrocities.”

Ratner’s group further concluded only an ad hoc UN tribunal would effectively mete out justice to the Khmer Rouge, rejecting proposals for trials in both a Cambodian criminal court and a UN-supervised Cambodian court.

Ratner’s group further considered and rejected other mechanisms of accountability, including investigatory or truth commissions, removal and exclusion from office of offenders, and financial sanctions.

So, the million-dollar question is this: What was the outcome of the Ratner expert group’s Cambodia investigation?

On September 22, 2022, after 16 years and ONLY 3 convictions, the international tribunal for Cambodia closed down for good.

National Public Radio reported:

The international court convened in Cambodia to judge the Khmer Rouge for its brutal 1970s rule ended its work Thursday after spending $337 million and 16 years to convict just three men of crimes after the regime cause the deaths of an estimated 1.7 million people. (Boldface added.)

To add insult to injury, the court ended its work by rejecting the genocide conviction of the only surviving leader who is in prison and 91 years old.

It cost USD 112 million to convict each one of the three Cambodian defendants!

Where did all that money go?

Though as a criminal defense lawyer I believe the accused is entitled to the best defense, I am appalled that much of the $337 million went to cover lawyers’ fees, wild goose chase investigations and grease the palms of corrupt officials and UN bureaucrats to keep the investigative scam going.

Justice delayed is justice denied.

The UN Human Rights Council spent over a quarter of a billion dollars to feed lawyers and other bottom feeders and let hang to dry (turn over in their grave) 1.7 million Cambodians!

Ratner and the Sri Lankan hit job

In 2010-11, Ratner was called to service once again by the new, new West “cattle barons and mine owners.”

Ratner was appointed as a member of the UN’s three-person panel of experts on Accountability in Sri Lanka with the aim of advising UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on human rights violations related to the end of the Sri Lankan civil war.

Beginning in the 1970s, Sri Lanka had faced a bloody terrorist war at the hands of the “Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE/Tamil Tigers”.

Hundreds of thousands were killed, maimed and displaced in Tamil Tiger terrorist war.

In 2009, Sri Lankan defense forces defeated the Tamil terrorists.

In the anti-terrorist action, it was alleged Sri Lankan defense forces attacked civilians and hospitals, denied food and medicines to the population and committed war crimes and all sort of atrocities.

After the Sri Lankan government declared victory over the terrorists in 2009,  it invited Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon to visit.

Barely a week after Moon’s visit, the UN Human Rights Council convened a special session on Sri Lanka at the request of Western governments to look into human rights violations during the Sri Lankan civil war.

In March 2011, Ratner’s panel of experts issued a 214-page report that threw everything, except the kitchen sink, at the Sri Lankan government.

Ratner’s group accused the Sri Lankan government of

(1) killing of civilians through widespread shelling;
(2) shelling of hospitals and humanitarian objects;
(3) denial of humanitarian assistance;
(4) human rights violations suffered by victims and survivors of the conflict, including both internally displaced persons and suspected LTTE cadre;
(5) human rights violations outside the conflict zone, including against the media and other critics of the government;
(6) using civilians as human buffers;
(7) killing civilians attempting to flee LTTE control;
(8) using military equipment in the proximity of civilians;
(9) forced recruitment of children and
(10) forced labor.

Ratner’s group estimated more than 40 thousand people had been extrajudicially killed by the Sri Lankan government.

Ratner’s group barely documented the horrendous crimes of the Tamil terrorists.

So, the million-dollar question is what happened to Ratner’s Sri Lankan investigation and report?

To make a long story short, as of September 12, 2022, the Sri Lankan government has told the UN Human Rights Council to take their report and shove it where the sun don’t shine!

In March 2019, Sri Lanka co-sponsored a resolution made by the UN giving the country a 2-year deadline to establish a judicial mechanism to assess violation of humanitarian international law committed during the civil war.

Tiger Tamils are to Sri Lanka as TPLF hyenas are to Ethiopia

There is great similarity between the Tamil Tiger terrorists and the TPLF hyena terrorists in Ethiopia.

On October 8, 1997, the US State Department classified  the  Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) a foreign terrorist organization.

From a date yet to be ascertained until June 2014, the TPLF was listed as a terrorist group by the US Department of Homeland Security.  Homeland Security determined:

The TPLF qualifies as a Tier III terrorist organization under INA section 212(a)(3)(B)(vi)(III) on the basis of its violent activities before it became part of the ruling coalition and the government of Ethiopia in May 1991.

The Tamil Tigers are listed in the Global Terrorism Database as a dangerous terrorist group.

The TPLF Hyenas are listed in the Global Terrorism Database as a dangerous terrorist group.

On November 11-14, 1993, the Tamil Tigers attacked Sri Lankan military base in government-controlled area of Pooneryn, overrunning the garrison and capturing military hardware and killing 532 Sri soldiers and 135 sailors.

On November 3-4, 2020, TPLF Hyenas attacked a federal military base (Northern Command) in Tigray region, overrunning the garrison and capturing military hardware and killing and maiming thousands of Ethiopian soldiers.

In August 2009, a 1,000 strong force of the Tamil Tigers massacred some 285 men, women and children, around a third of the population of the Palliyagodella village.

On November 9, 2020, the TPLF Hyenas massacred 766 innocent people in Mai Cadra.

The Tamil Tigers forcibly recruited child soldiers.

The TPLF Hyenas forcibly recruited child soldiers. They conscripting and deploying child soldiers at this very moment!

On January 5, 2007, Tamil Tigers terrorists set off explosions that killed 6 people and injured at least 30 in the Sri Lankan capital of Columbo.

ON September 16, 2006, the TPLF Hyenas planted 3 bombs that went off in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa and publicly blamed Eritrea and other opposition groups.

Beginning in February 2009, the Tamil Tigers, “in spite of the futility of their military situation, not only refused to surrender, but also continued to prevent civilians from leaving combat areas ensuring their continued presence as a human buffer.”

Beginning in December 2021, the TPLF has been using child soldiers as human shields.

In August 2022, TPLF Hyenas issued orders to shoot their own retreating troops.

The Sri Lankan defense forces defeated the Tamil Tigers in 2009 and rid their country of a malignant cancer once and for all bringing peace to their people.

The Ethiopian defense forces shall soon defeat the TPLF Hyenas and rid their country of a malignant cancer and bring peace to their people.

Kaari Betty Murungi (Kenya)

Betty Murungi is the chairperson of the Ratner hit team.

Murungi replaced former International Criminal Court prosecutor Fatou Bensouda who resigned on June 22, 2021, four months after the Ratner hit team was established.

Murungi has long been a longtime apostle, cheerleader and defender of the  terrorist TPLF.

On April 2, 2021, when Murungi tweeted, “If there was a time for application of R2P in Tigray, the time is now,” she was advocating for humanitarian military intervention.

 

 

“R2P” is an acronym for “responsibility to protect” by international community in cases of mass atrocity crimes of genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity.

(Interestingly, Murungi deleted her Twitter account to destroy all trace of her tweets advocating for the terrorist TPLF, but her efforts were not entirely successful.)

Murungi got her chance to put her wishes into effect on June 22, 2021, when she replaced Fantou Bensouda as chairperson of the ICHREE.

Murungi was handpicked for the job by the president of the Human Rights Council because she had a solid track record of supporting the terrorist TPLF.

What is so shocking to the reasonable mind is that the president of the HRC did not even bother to do  the MINIMAL DUE DILIGENCE to screen Murungi for simple things like bias, conflict of interest, appearance of impartiality, neutrality, etc.

Indeed, it is highly likely Murungi was selected precisely because she can be trusted to deliver a body blow to Ethiopia on behalf of the terrorist TPLF come what may.

“R2P! Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!”

In the end, Murungi torpedoed the UN Human Rights Council with her blatant partisan support for terrorist TPLF.

Murungi had been on the Council for less than three months when the ICHREE report on Ethiopia was issued.

It is interesting that Murungi has a history of sabotaging human rights investigations.

Between 2009 and 2010, Murungi served as Vice Chairperson and Commissioner of the Kenya Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission in her own country Kenya.

That Commission was established after Kenya’s 2007 Presidential election which  sparked violent clashes over electoral fraud allegations.

In that violence, nearly 1,500 people were killed and almost 300,000 were forced to flee their homes.

Following the violence, a power-sharing coalition government was established which authorized the creation of a Truth, Justice, and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC).

The mandate of the TJRC was “to investigate and recommend appropriate action on “human rights abuses” committed between December 12, 1963 and February 28, 2008.” The TJRC was also tasked to establish as complete a picture as possible of the causes, nature and extent of the post-election violence.

As Vice Chairperson and Commissioner of the Kenya Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission, Murungi proved to be divisive and ineffective.

Murungi resigned claiming she “was unable to continue  given the public position I have expressed with regards to matters facing the Commission’s Chair.”

Murungi said she was resigning because the Commission’s Chair was “unfit to hold such an office due to his past record as a senior government official.”

However, the hypocrite Murungi did not refuse to accept nor offer to resign after her PAST RECORD showed she is a dyed-in-the-wool terrorist TPLF supporter!

So, what happened to the TJRC?

In its 2013, the TJRC reported, among many other things:

1) Between 1963 and 1978, the government of President Jomo Kenyatta was responsible for numerous gross violations of human rights including killings, torture, and collective punishment, denial of basic needs and arbitrary detention of political opponents and activists;

2) Between 1978 and 2002, the government of President Daniel Moi was responsible for numerous gross violations of human rights including unlawful detentions, widespread torture and ill-treatment of political opponents;

3) Between 2002 and 2008, the government of President Mwai Kibaki was responsible for numerous gross violations of human rights, including unlawful detentions.

4) Security operations in Northern Kenya were accompanied by systematic and widespread torture, rape and sexual violence against girls and women.

In spring 2009, the Kenyan Parliament turned down a Constitutional Amendment Bill for a Special Tribunal for post-election violence.

On March 31, 2010, the International Criminal Court (ICC) opened an investigation into the post-election violence.

Six individuals, including the deputy prime minister, an ex-minister, and an ex-police chief were ordered to appear before the Court in The Hague.

Ironically, while I engaged global public opinion to fully prosecute Kenyatta and Ruto before the ICC, Murungi did not utter a word!

Now, Murungi becomes a champion of human rights in Ethiopia while she callously turned a blind eye to the deaths of 1,500 Kenyans and displacement of 300 thousand of her own brothers and sisters!

Kenyan Nobel Laureate Wangari Maathai wrote:

“The real intention of the just-formed Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC) therefore, is to facilitate impunity, hoodwink and massage the victims and yet again, sweep the crimes under the carpet. None of the leaders has ever been made to account for crimes they commit against the state. Why now?

Radhika Coomaraswamy and the Myanmar hit job

Radhika Coomaraswamy, a Sri Lankan, is the third member of the Ratner Hit Team sent to Ethiopia.

Coomaraswamy is the former UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative on Children and Armed Conflict. She also served as Chairperson of the National Human Rights Commission in Sri Lanka from 2003-2006.

Coomaraswamy’s claim to fame is that she was the lead author of the 418-page Global Study on the Implementation of Resolution 1325 (full involvement of women in all efforts for maintaining and promoting peace and security) published in 2015.

In 2017, after alleged atrocities against the Rohingya people in Myanmar, Coomaraswamy was appointed a member of the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on Myanmar.

In 2018, the Coomaraswamy expert panel accused Myanmar authorities of committing

1) crimes against humanity including murder, imprisonment, enforced disappearance, torture, rape, sexual slavery and other forms of sexual violence, persecution, and enslavement;

2) crimes against humanity which meets the legal requirements of war crimes (murder, cruel treatment, outrages upon personal dignity, attacking civilians, displacing civilians, pillaging, attacking protected objects, taking hostages, sentencing or execution without due process);

3) rape and other forms of sexual violence on a massive scale; and

4) arbitrary and frequent denial of humanitarian assistance to people in need and blocking movement of relief personnel for long periods of time.

Coomaraswamy group “recommended prosecution of senior generals of the Myanmar military for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in an international criminal tribunal.”

Coomaraswamy was a UN Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women from 1994-2003.

In 1996, Coomaraswamy submitted an addendum to her report on violence against women to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, citing evidence that proved to be a hoax and a fabrication.

Coomaraswamy effectively committed academic fraud by using the fabricated evidence of Yoshida Seiji (who claimed to have worked during World War II as a labor mobilization manager and witnessed sexual exploitation (“comfort women) of Korean women by Japanese troops) to bolster her credentials as fighter for women’s rights.

What is extraordinary is the fact that in her investigation of human rights violations in Tigray region, Coomaraswamy reported no evidence of violations of the rights of children even though she was a celebrated UN Special Representative on Children and Armed Conflict.

Conscription of child soldiers by the TPLF has been documented extensively by the BBC and other sources.

I have documented with video evidence the top TPLF terrorist leader stating in an interview that “the war will be a people’s war, starting with children.”

 

Despite ample evidence of use of child soldiers by the terrorist TPLF, Coomaraswamy, Ratner and Murungi turned a blind eye, deaf ears and muted lips.

Ratner, Coomaraswamy, Murungi and the Ethiopia hit job

The mandate of the “International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia” is to

1) conduct a thorough and impartial investigation into allegations of violations and abuses since 3 November 2020 by all parties to the conflict;

2) establish the facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged violations and abuses, to collect and preserve evidence, to identify those responsible for future accountability efforts;

3) provide guidance on transitional justice, including accountability, reconciliation and

4) engage with all relevant stakeholders.

The main “conclusions” of the ICHREE Commission quoted directly from the “REPORT” are as follows:

1) The Commission finds reasonable grounds to believe that the ENDF shelled Mekelle on 28 November 2020, killing and injuring civilians and striking civilian objects days after Tigrayan forces had left the city with their assets.

2) The Commission finds reasonable grounds to believe that the ENDF conducted a drone strike against the Dedebit IDP camp on 7 January 2022, killing and injuring approximately 60 civilians and destroying civilian infrastructure.

3) The Commission finds reasonable grounds to believe that Tigrayan forces killed civilians and persons rendered hors de combat, raped, looted, and damaged or destroyed civilian infrastructure and property in Kobo and Chenna in late August and early September 2021.

4) The Commission finds reasonable grounds to believe that the ENDF, EDF, and Fano have committed widespread acts of rape and sexual violence against Tigrayan women and girls.

5) The Commission finds reasonable grounds allied regional State governments have implemented a widespread range of measures designed to systematically deprive the population of Tigray of material and services indispensable for its survival, including healthcare, shelter, water, sanitation, education and food.

The ICHREE report has been meticulously and rigorously refuted point-by-point by the Ethiopian Government.

The Ethiopian Government’s rebuttal is a tour-de-force of legal and methodological analysis.

I recommend the reader to review the rebuttal in its entirety.

Methodological flaws, failure to adhere to UN evidentiary standards and its own terms of reference render the ICHREE report useless

In light of the thorough rebuttal of the Ethiopian Government, I shall focus on some of the major methodological and technical legal issues concerning the ICHREE report.

1) The ICHREE asserts it conducted its investigation and prepared its report “with limited time, staffing and access to sites and documents” and had “to select a specific and manageable preliminary group of incidents and themes” in its investigation.

The ICHREE also claims to have applied the evidentiary standard of “reasonable grounds to believe” and conducted its investigation “in accordance with the practice of United Nations fact-finding and investigative bodies.”

As a technical evidentiary matter, the threshold “reasonable grounds to believe” standard is  problematic but applies in considering 1) whether a crime has been committed, and 2) whether the defendant is criminally liable. The standard further applies to infer mutually exclusive reasonable conclusions that a crime has been committed, and equally another reasonable conclusion a crime has not been committed.

The ICHREE’s report provides little or no explanation on its application of the “reasonable grounds to believe” standard and the specific investigative methods it used to collect and analyze evidence. It offers no indication on how to test the credibility of the “evidence” it collected and expects its vague and unsubstantiated conclusions to be accepted ex cathedra as infallible.

The Ratner-Murungi-Coomswarmy hit team reports it applied the “reasonable grounds to believe” standard in a “select specific and manageable group of incidents and themes for which it could complete investigations in two months with limited resources.”

The fact of the matter is that ICHREE only gives lip service to application of “reasonable grounds to believe” standard as the Ethiopian Government Response has shown in its meticulous rebuttal.

The ICHREE report fails to meet the minimum threshold for “reasonable grounds to believe” as it provides little or no explanation on the circumstances of the crimes, the time and date or duration of alleged crimes corroboration or verification.

The glaring omissions and methodological flaws of the ICHREE can best be seen in comparison to the work of the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC)/Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) Joint Investigation.

That investigation involved field work of nearly four months in various locations throughout Ethiopia under challenging circumstances with nearly 270 confidential interviews with victims and 64 meetings with a variety of stakeholders.

The governments of Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States “commended OHCHR and EHRC for their impartial and transparent work.”

Indeed, the Ethiopian Government accepted that report and is implementing its recommendations.

The Ethiopian Government has rejected the Ratner hit team’s report in its entirety.

2) The ICHREE was mandated to “conduct a thorough and impartial investigation into allegations of violations and abuses committed since 3 November 2020 by all parties to the conflict, by building upon the report of the Office of the High Commissioner and the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission. The ICHREE failed to honor its mandate and ended up preparing a report that not only contradicts but also trashes the highly commendable 2021 joint OHCHR and EHRC report.

3) The ICHREE failed to honor its own terms of reference (the document which sets the objectives, scope of work, activities, task to be performed, respective responsibilities, etc.)  which provides the ICHREE will  “build upon the findings, conclusions, and recommendations of the report of the JIT (2021 OHCHR and EHRC findings) in a way that adds value and avoids unnecessary duplication of effort without limiting the temporal or geographic scope above.”

In its rush to judgment, the ICHREE completely ignored the 2021 report and findings, choosing to re-investigate events already investigated rigorously and given conclusion.

4) The ICHREE’s admission that it conducted “most of its interviews remotely” (virtually) and used “satellite imagery, print and audio-visual material, and open-source information” as evidence that meets the standard of reasonable grounds to believe” is outlandish,  outrageous and shocking.

The ICHREE’s random and causal use of satellite imagery, print and audio-visual material, and open-source information in clear disregard and flagrant violation of the 2015 UN Commissions of Inquiry and Fact-finding Missions: Guidance and Practice (see pp. 40-48). The “open source” information used by ICHREE is largely Western fake news and yellow journalism. The UN Guideline requires corroboration and independent verification of information obtained in an investigation, which the ICHREE report disregards.

5) In flagrant departure from the UN Guidance and Practice, the ICHREE allegation ENDF “soldiers committed extensive extrajudicial killings, arbitrary detention, and looting” and “used civilian objects for military purposes and restricted access to medical treatment” was unsupported by a single witness testimony.

6) The ICHREE aims to create moral equivalency by dignifying the TPLF terrorist group, declared as such by the Ethiopian parliament, militarily  occupying Tigray as “the Regional Government of Tigray”. The ICHREE aims to lift the image of the terrorist group in the eyes of global public opinion by sanitizing it from a terrorist group to a “government.”

7) To add insult to injury and beyond the scope of its mandate and authority, the ICHREE dictates: “That the Inter-Governmental Authority for Development (IGAD), the African Union Peace and Security Council, and UN Security Council place the situation in Ethiopia on their agendas and take action aimed at restoring peace, stability and security in the region, thereby preventing further violations and abuses of international human rights law and humanitarian law.” (Boldface added.)

AFTER ALL IS SAID AND DONE, THE SINGLE MOST OUTRAGEOUS ELEMENT OF THE ICHREE REPORT IS ITS RECOMMENDATION OF R2P (responsibility to protect.)

KAARI MURUNGI FINALLY GOT HER WISH!

Million-dollar question: What will happen to the ICHREE report?

What happened to the UNHCR report of Cambodia?

What happened to the UNHCR Myanmar report?

What happened to the UNHCR Sri Lankan report?

The ICHREE has requested a one-year extension of its term. It is said a decision could be made on October 6, 2022,

The fact of the matter is with the Government of Ethiopia’s complete rejection of the report along with many other countries including China, Russia, India, it will prove to be a flash in the pan.

The fact of the matter is also that the US, EU, UN and certain Western European countries established to pressure and embarrass the Ethiopian government and force it to negotiate with the terrorist TPLF.  They also hoped they could use the report to advocate global sanctions against Ethiopia.

The fact of the matter is that the US, EU, UN and certain Western European countries wanted to use the report for R2P, that is humanitarian military action in Ethiopia to protect the terrorist TPLF.

None of the above seem likely.

Joe Biden, the great war monger, seems to accept the reality of AFRICAN SOLUTIONS FOR AFRICAN PROBLEMS.

 

 

The weaponization of the UNHCR as a neocolonial tool has not gone unnoticed by African leaders.

The weaponization of the UNHCR to criminalize African leaders as human rights outlaws with a long-term agenda to undermine African sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity is not lost on Africans.

Last month, South African Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor gave Blinken the dress down when he visited South Africa last month.

Because when we believe in freedom – as I’m saying, it’s freedom for everybody – you can’t say because Africa is doing this, you will then be punished by the United States…. One thing I definitely dislike is being told `either you choose this or else.’ When a minister speaks to me like that … I definitely will not be bullied in that way, nor would I expect any other African country worth its salt to agree to be [so] treated.

During the interactive dialogue in the General Assembly over the ICHREE, 32 countries delivered their statements.

There were 13 countries that rejected the ICHREE report and 19 that supported it.

Countries rejecting the ICHREE report argued:

The Council is using the opportunity to advance a particular political agenda.

The report manifestly lacks neutrality, impartiality and rationality.

The report is a significant trespass on Ethiopia’s sovereignty.

The Ethiopian Government’s peace initiatives are to be commended and solutions should be sought only through the African Union.

The international community should support the Ethiopian Government’s efforts find lasting solutions and not meddle in Ethiopia’s internal affairs.

The Ratner Mercenary Group and monetization of human suffering

The Ratner Mercenary Group is in it for the money! It is strictly business!

They have a one-size fits all boilerplate human rights report which they will customize for their clients based on a narrative that is given to them.

They will cut and paste and modify their standard templates to deliver whatever report their clients demand of them.

A comparison of the Cambodia, Sri Lanka and Ethiopia reports shows how the Ratner Hit Team recycles the same template over and over to line their pockets.

The Ratner Mercenary Group is available for hire by anyone who is willing to pay them top dollar for their services.

Their motto, “Have law books, will travel anywhere in the world for a hit job in the name of human rights.”

Black ants, red ants, lawbook-toting hit teams and

Ants are a source of wisdom in African folktales as strong, hardworking, cooperative and determined creatures.

“Two ants can carry one grasshopper.” “When ants unite, they can lift an elephant.”

There is a putatively African folktale about ants that is apt to Ethiopia’s current situation.

It is said if you collect 100 black ants and 100 red ants and put them in a glass jar, nothing will happen. They will go about their business.

But if you take the jar, shake it violently and leave it on the table, the ants will start attacking and killing each other.

Red ants believe the black ants are the enemy and vice versa.

But the real enemy is the one who shook the jar.

So it is in Ethiopia.

There are 120 million hardworking, prosperity seeking, cooperative and mutually supporting ants in Ethiopia.

Then come the jar shakers with their hit men and women toting the gospel of human rights and preaching fire and brimstone to Ethiopians.

I find James Russell Lowell’s poem “The resent Crisis” appropriate in understanding the lies, damned lies and disinformation used by the new, new West to demonize Ethiopia, dehumanize, brutalize and polarize its people and weaponize human rights to keep Ethiopia in perpetual poverty:

When a deed is done for Freedom, through the broad earth’s aching breast
Runs a thrill of joy prophetic, trembling on from east to west,

Careless seems the great Avenger; history’s pages but record
One death-grapple in the darkness ‘twixt old systems and the Word;
Truth forever on the scaffold, Wrong forever on the throne,—
Yet that scaffold sways the future, and, behind the dim unknown,
Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own.

Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own ETHIOPIA!

WE WON’T BACK DOWN. WE WILL STAND OUR GROUND.

ETHIOPIA SHALL PROPSPER. ETHIOPIANS SHALL LIVE IN PEACE.

ETHIOPIA SHALL PERSEVERE!  ETHIOPIA SHALL OVERCOME!

ETHIOPIA SHALL PREVAIL!

Because Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own ETHIOPIA!



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The emergence of modern socialists

5 mins read

Throughout most of American history, the idea of socialism has been a hopeless, often vaguely defined dream. So distant were its prospects at midcentury that the best definition Irving Howe and Lewis Coser, editors of the socialist periodical Dissent, could come up with in 1954 was this: “Socialism is the name of our desire.”
That may be changing. Public support for socialism is growing. Self-identified socialists like Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib are making inroads into the Democratic Party, which the political analyst Kevin Phillips once called the “second-most enthusiastic capitalist party” in the world. Membership in the Democratic Socialists of America, the largest socialist organization in the country, is skyrocketing, especially among young people.
What explains this irruption? And what do we mean, in 2018, when we talk about “socialism”? Some part of the story is pure accident. Corey Robin, Professor of Political Science at Brooklyn College and the City University of New York Graduate Center stated that in 2016, Mr. Sanders made a strong bid for the Democratic presidential nomination. Far from hurting his candidacy, the “socialism” label helped it. Mr. Sanders wasn’t a liberal, a progressive or even a Democrat. He was untainted by all the words and ways of politics as usual. Ironically, the fact that socialism was so long in exile now shields it from the toxic familiarities of American politics.
Another part of the story is less accidental. Corey Robin noted that since the 1970s, American liberals have taken a right turn on the economy. They used to champion workers and unions, high taxes, redistribution, regulation and public services. Now they lionize billionaires like Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg, deregulate wherever possible, steer clear of unions except at election time and at least until recently, fight over how much to cut most people’s taxes.
Liberals, of course, argue that they are merely using market-friendly tools like tax cuts and deregulation to achieve things like equitable growth, expanded health care and social justice which are the same ends they always have pursued. Kevin Kelly of Wired Magazine explained that for decades, left-leaning voters have gone along with that answer, even if they didn’t like the results, for lack of an alternative.
Socialism means different things to different people. For some, it conjures the Soviet Union and the gulag. For others, Scandinavia and guaranteed income. But neither is the true vision of socialism. What the socialist seeks is freedom.
John Altman, an American analyst argued that of under capitalism, people are forced to enter the market just to live. The libertarian sees the market as synonymous with freedom. But socialists hear “the market” and think of the anxious parent, desperate not to offend the insurance representative on the phone, lest he decree that the policy she paid for doesn’t cover her child’s appendectomy. According to Kevin Kelly, under capitalism, people are forced to submit to the boss. Terrified of getting on his bad side, people bow and scrape, flatter and flirt, or worse just to get that raise or make sure they don’t get fired.
John Altman further noted that the socialist argument against capitalism isn’t that it makes people poor. It’s that it makes people unfree. When our well-being depends upon their whim, when the basic needs of life compel submission to the market and subjugation at work, we live not in freedom but in domination. Socialists want to end that domination: to establish freedom from rule by the boss, from the need to smile for the sake of a sale, from the obligation to sell for the sake of survival.
Listen to today’s socialists, and we will hear less the language of poverty than of power. They invokes the 1 percent and speaks to and for the “working class”, not “working people” or “working families,” homey phrases meant to soften and soothe. The 1 percent and the working class are not economic descriptors. They’re political accusations. They split society in two, declaring one side the illegitimate ruler of the other; one side the taker of the other’s freedom, power and promise.
Kenny Malone, economic analyst of Planet Money stated that like the great transformative presidents, today’s socialist candidates reach beyond the parties to target a malignant social form: for Abraham Lincoln, it was the slavocracy; for Franklin Roosevelt, it was the economic royalists. According to Kenny Malone, the great realigners understood that any transformation of society requires a confrontation not just with the opposition but also with the political economy that underpins both parties. For Lincoln in the 1850s confronting the Whigs and the Democrats, that language was free labor. For leftists in the 2010s, confronting the Republicans and the Democrats, it’s socialism.
To critics in the mainstream and further to the left, that language can seem slippery. With their talk of Medicare for All or increasing the minimum wage, these socialist candidates sound like New Deal or Great Society liberals. There’s not much discussion, yet, of classic socialist tenets like worker control or collective ownership of the means of production.
And of course, there’s overlap between what liberals and socialists call for. But even if liberals come to support single-payer health care, free college, more unions and higher wages, the divide between the two will remain. Danielle Kurtzleben, another economic analyst of Planet Money explained that for liberals, these are policies to alleviate economic misery. For socialists, these are measures of emancipation, liberating men and women from the tyranny of the market and autocracy at work. Back in the 1930s, it was said that liberalism was freedom plus groceries. The socialist, by contrast, believes that making things free makes people free.
According to Danielle Kurtzleben, it’s also important to remember that the traffic between socialism and liberalism has always been wide. The 10-point program of Marx and Engels’s “Communist Manifesto” included demands that are now boilerplate: universal public education, abolition of child labor and a progressive income tax. It can take a lot of socialists to get a little liberalism: It was socialists in Europe, after all, who won the right to vote, freedom of speech and parliamentary democracy. Given how timid and tepid American liberalism has become, it’s not surprising that a more arresting term helps get the conversation going. Sometimes nudges need a nudge.
Still, today’s socialism is just getting started. It took Lincoln a decade plus a civil war, and the decision of black slaves to defy their masters, rushing to join advancing Union troops to come to the position that free labor meant immediate abolition.
In magazines and on websites, in reading groups and party chapters, socialists are debating the next steps: state ownership of certain industries, worker councils and economic cooperatives, sovereign wealth funds. Once upon a time, such conversations were the subject of academic satire and science fiction. Now they’re getting out the vote and driving campaigns. It’s too soon to tell whether they’ll spill over into Congress, but events have a way of converting barroom chatter into legislative debate.
As Corey Robin noted, socialism is not journalists, intellectuals or politicians armed with a policy agenda. As Marx and Engels understood, this was one of their core insights, what distinguished them from other socialist thinkers, ever ready with their blueprints, it is workers who get us there, who decide what and where “there” is. That, too, is a kind of freedom. Socialist freedom.

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Pan-African Parliament on working visit in Morocco

1 min read

Addis Ababa September 25/2022 (ENA) The Bureau Members of the Pan-African Parliament( PAP) are on a three-day working visit, 24-27 September, in Morocco aimed at exchanging experience, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affaires.

Upon the joint invitations of M.Rachid Talbi El Alami and  Enaam Mayara,Speaker of the House of Representatives and President of the House of Councilors of the Kingdom of Morocco respectively, the Bureau Members of the Pan-African Parliament( PAP) are on a three-day working visit in Morocco.

The visiting delegation is led by M. Fortune Charumbira, President of the PAP, and composed of all four vice presidents, including Ashebir W/ Georgis, who is a member of the House of Peoples’ Representatives of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and the Second Vice President of the PAP,  Lomi Bedho, Deputy Speaker of the House and International Relation and Conflict Resolution Rapporter of the PAP are among the visiting delegation.

M.Rachid Talbi El Alami ,Speaker of the House of Representatives of the Kingdom of Morocco, reaffirmed that Morocco as a founding member of the Organization of the African Unity (OAU  is fully committed to the ideals of Pan-Africanism and that it will provide all the necessary support to the success of one of the important organs of the African Union–the PAP.

Ashsebir W/Georgis on his part, expressed his gratitude to the Kingdom of Morocco under the leadership H.M King Mohammed VI for its commitment and support to the African Union. He applauded the success of Morocco in the fields of agriculture, education , infrastructure and many other fields, and said that the delegation is looking forward to gaining  experience from Morocco’s success stories during the visit.

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THE DAYLIGHT LYNCHING OF ETHIOPIA BY THE DIRTY HIRED GUNS OF THE UN HRC, EXPOSED!

22 mins read

 

Law-book toting gunslingers of the new, new West

In the folklore of the American wild, wild West, cattle barons and mine owners would pay hired guns to come around and “take care of business.”

Oftentimes, they would pay hired guns (hit men) to rid outlaws the local marshals and sheriffs could not handle.

Occasionally, they would hire them as bounty hunters to track down outlaws and bring them back “dead or alive.”

In the cold realpolitik reality of the new new West of the Biden era, Post WW II, the old-time gun slingers are replaced by law-book-toting lawyers and arrogant and self-righteous gospel-of-human-rights-thumping paper tigers and dragons preaching fire, brimstone and damnation against “outlaw” African countries for a contract price.

The new, new West’s cattle barons and mine owners are called Joe Biden, Susan Rice (Princess of Darkness), Chris Coons, Gregory Meeks, Robert Menendez, Josep Borrell, Antonio Gutierrez and Co.

The new, new West’s gunslingers are not called Wyatt Earp, Stagecoach Mary or Belle Starr.

They are called Steven Ratner, Kaari Murungi, and Radhika Coomaraswamy.

Their job is to travel the world on behalf of the cattle barons and mine owners of the new, new West and bushwhack governments in developing countries using  human rights as a machete.

Ratner’s professional description posted on the University of Michigan Law School website recounts his decades-long exploits as an international hit/lawman chasing after all types of Cambodian and Sri Lankan government outlaws: war criminals, criminals against humanity, perpetrators of genocide, etc.

Ratner

began his legal career as an attorney-adviser in the Office of the Legal Adviser at the U.S. State Department. In 1998–1999, he was appointed by the United Nations (UN) secretary-general to a three-person group of experts to consider options for bringing the Khmer Rouge to justice; and in 2010–2011, he was a member of the UN’s three-person Panel of Experts on Accountability in Sri Lanka, which advised the UN Secretary-General on human rights violations related to the end of the Sri Lankan civil war… (Boldface added.)

Ratner has been a decades-long legal hitman for the State Department travelling to Cambodia, Sri Lanka and elsewhere in hot pursuit of alleged human rights outlaws.

As a member of the International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia (ICHREE), Ratner is reprising his role in Cambodia and Sri Lanka.

Indeed, it is not a big deal for him.

All he has to do is cut and paste the Cambodia and Sri Lanka “investigative” reports, substitute “Ethiopia” for the two countries and voila!

Another fine fictional human rights violations report on Ethiopia!

On March 2, 2022, Ratner’s Gang of 3 was appointed by the President of the Human Rights Council to investigate human rights violations in Ethiopia.

On March 11, 2022, Ratner represented the following incredible statement on the University of Michigan Law School website:

The whole world, and especially the US, knows the terrorist TPLF started the war!

On November 4, 2020, the day after the TPLF attacked Ethiopian federal forces in Tigray region, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo issued a statement making clear the U.S. position:

The United States is deeply concerned by reports that the Tigray People’s Liberation Front carried out attacks on Ethiopian National Defense Force bases in Ethiopia’s Tigray region on November 3. (Boldface added.)

Not only that, a top leader of the TPLF terrorist group explained how and why they started the war.

For translation, click here.

How Ratner would conduct his “investigation” and frame Ethiopia for human rights violations was clear nine days after his appointment to the expert panel.

Ratner had already concluded Ethiopia had started the war and announced it to the world.

His job was simply to selectively collect evidence to support his conclusion: “Ethiopia launched an attack on Tigray. Rampaging Ethiopian troops committed war crimes, crimes against humanity, rape, torture, etc. in Tigray.”

That is precisely what the September 19, 2022 ICHREE report concluded. (More on that below.)

Ratner and the Cambodia hit job

In 1998–1999, Ratner was appointed by the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon to a three-person group of experts to “consider options for bringing members of the Khmer Rouge regime to justice in Cambodia.”

Indeed, Ratner was instrumental in getting the UN General Assembly to pass a resolution asking the Secretary-General to consider “the possibility of the appointment of a group of experts” to look into human rights violations, war crimes, etc., in Cambodia.

Once appointed, Ratner’s group was given a triple mandate: (1) evaluate the existing evidence and determine the nature of the crimes committed; (2) assess the feasibility of bringing leaders to justice and (3) explore options for trials before an international or domestic court.

Ratner’s group also insisted the main source of evidence will be witness testimony. Any trial lawyer worth his salt knows, “eyewitness testimony is fickle and, all too often, shockingly inaccurate.”

Ratner’s group undertook its “investigation” in Cambodia and reported commission of various offenses under international law including genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, forced labor and  torture among others.

Ratner’s group recommended trials of suspects be confined to “those persons most responsible for the most serious violations of human rights in Cambodia including senior leaders with responsibility over the abuses as well as those at lower levels who are directly implicated in the most serious atrocities.”

Ratner’s group further concluded only an ad hoc UN tribunal would effectively mete out justice to the Khmer Rouge, rejecting proposals for trials in both a Cambodian criminal court and a UN-supervised Cambodian court.

Ratner’s group further considered and rejected other mechanisms of accountability, including investigatory or truth commissions, removal and exclusion from office of offenders, and financial sanctions.

So, the million-dollar question is this: What was the outcome of the Ratner expert group’s Cambodia investigation?

On September 22, 2022, after 16 years and ONLY 3 convictions, the international tribunal for Cambodia closed down for good.

National Public Radio reported:

The international court convened in Cambodia to judge the Khmer Rouge for its brutal 1970s rule ended its work Thursday after spending $337 million and 16 years to convict just three men of crimes after the regime cause the deaths of an estimated 1.7 million people. (Boldface added.)

To add insult to injury, the court ended its work by rejecting the genocide conviction of the only surviving leader who is in prison and 91 years old.

It cost USD 112 million to convict each one of the three Cambodian defendants!

Where did all that money go?

Though as a criminal defense lawyer I believe the accused is entitled to the best defense, I am appalled that much of the $337 million went to cover lawyers’ fees, wild goose chase investigations and grease the palms of corrupt officials and UN bureaucrats to keep the investigative scam going.

Justice delayed is justice denied.

The UN Human Rights Council spent over a quarter of a billion dollars to feed lawyers and other bottom feeders and let hang to dry (turn over in their grave) 1.7 million Cambodians!

Ratner and the Sri Lankan hit job

In 2010-11, Ratner was called to service once again by the new, new West “cattle barons and mine owners.”

Ratner was appointed as a member of the UN’s three-person panel of experts on Accountability in Sri Lanka with the aim of advising UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on human rights violations related to the end of the Sri Lankan civil war.

Beginning in the 1970s, Sri Lanka had faced a bloody terrorist war at the hands of the “Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE/Tamil Tigers”.

Hundreds of thousands were killed, maimed and displaced in Tamil Tiger terrorist war.

In 2009, Sri Lankan defense forces defeated the Tamil terrorists.

In the anti-terrorist action, it was alleged Sri Lankan defense forces attacked civilians and hospitals, denied food and medicines to the population and committed war crimes and all sort of atrocities.

After the Sri Lankan government declared victory over the terrorists in 2009,  it invited Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon to visit.

Barely a week after Moon’s visit, the UN Human Rights Council convened a special session on Sri Lanka at the request of Western governments to look into human rights violations during the Sri Lankan civil war.

In March 2011, Ratner’s panel of experts issued a 214-page report that threw everything, except the kitchen sink, at the Sri Lankan government.

Ratner’s group accused the Sri Lankan government of

(1) killing of civilians through widespread shelling;
(2) shelling of hospitals and humanitarian objects;
(3) denial of humanitarian assistance;
(4) human rights violations suffered by victims and survivors of the conflict, including both internally displaced persons and suspected LTTE cadre;
(5) human rights violations outside the conflict zone, including against the media and other critics of the government;
(6) using civilians as human buffers;
(7) killing civilians attempting to flee LTTE control;
(8) using military equipment in the proximity of civilians;
(9) forced recruitment of children and
(10) forced labor.

Ratner’s group estimated more than 40 thousand people had been extrajudicially killed by the Sri Lankan government.

Ratner’s group barely documented the horrendous crimes of the Tamil terrorists.

So, the million-dollar question is what happened to Ratner’s Sri Lankan investigation and report?

To make a long story short, as of September 12, 2022, the Sri Lankan government has told the UN Human Rights Council to take their report and shove it where the sun don’t shine!

In March 2019, Sri Lanka co-sponsored a resolution made by the UN giving the country a 2-year deadline to establish a judicial mechanism to assess violation of humanitarian international law committed during the civil war.

Tiger Tamils are to Sri Lanka as TPLF hyenas are to Ethiopia

There is great similarity between the Tamil Tiger terrorists and the TPLF hyena terrorists in Ethiopia.

On October 8, 1997, the US State Department classified  the  Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) a foreign terrorist organization.

From a date yet to be ascertained until June 2014, the TPLF was listed as a terrorist group by the US Department of Homeland Security.  Homeland Security determined:

The TPLF qualifies as a Tier III terrorist organization under INA section 212(a)(3)(B)(vi)(III) on the basis of its violent activities before it became part of the ruling coalition and the government of Ethiopia in May 1991.

The Tamil Tigers are listed in the Global Terrorism Database as a dangerous terrorist group.

The TPLF Hyenas are listed in the Global Terrorism Database as a dangerous terrorist group.

On November 11-14, 1993, the Tamil Tigers attacked Sri Lankan military base in government-controlled area of Pooneryn, overrunning the garrison and capturing military hardware and killing 532 Sri soldiers and 135 sailors.

On November 3-4, 2020, TPLF Hyenas attacked a federal military base (Northern Command) in Tigray region, overrunning the garrison and capturing military hardware and killing and maiming thousands of Ethiopian soldiers.

In August 2009, a 1,000 strong force of the Tamil Tigers massacred some 285 men, women and children, around a third of the population of the Palliyagodella village.

On November 9, 2020, the TPLF Hyenas massacred 766 innocent people in Mai Cadra.

The Tamil Tigers forcibly recruited child soldiers.

The TPLF Hyenas forcibly recruited child soldiers. They conscripting and deploying child soldiers at this very moment!

On January 5, 2007, Tamil Tigers terrorists set off explosions that killed 6 people and injured at least 30 in the Sri Lankan capital of Columbo.

ON September 16, 2006, the TPLF Hyenas planted 3 bombs that went off in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa and publicly blamed Eritrea and other opposition groups.

Beginning in February 2009, the Tamil Tigers, “in spite of the futility of their military situation, not only refused to surrender, but also continued to prevent civilians from leaving combat areas ensuring their continued presence as a human buffer.”

Beginning in December 2021, the TPLF has been using child soldiers as human shields.

In August 2022, TPLF Hyenas issued orders to shoot their own retreating troops.

The Sri Lankan defense forces defeated the Tamil Tigers in 2009 and rid their country of a malignant cancer once and for all bringing peace to their people.

The Ethiopian defense forces shall soon defeat the TPLF Hyenas and rid their country of a malignant cancer and bring peace to their people.

Kaari Betty Murungi (Kenya)

Betty Murungi is the chairperson of the Ratner hit team.

Murungi replaced former International Criminal Court prosecutor Fatou Bensouda who resigned on June 22, 2021, four months after the Ratner hit team was established.

Murungi has long been a longtime apostle, cheerleader and defender of the  terrorist TPLF.

On April 2, 2021, when Murungi tweeted, “If there was a time for application of R2P in Tigray, the time is now,” she was advocating for humanitarian military intervention.

 

 

“R2P” is an acronym for “responsibility to protect” by international community in cases of mass atrocity crimes of genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity.

(Interestingly, Murungi deleted her Twitter account to destroy all trace of her tweets advocating for the terrorist TPLF, but her efforts were not entirely successful.)

Murungi got her chance to put her wishes into effect on June 22, 2021, when she replaced Fantou Bensouda as chairperson of the ICHREE.

Murungi was handpicked for the job by the president of the Human Rights Council because she had a solid track record of supporting the terrorist TPLF.

What is so shocking to the reasonable mind is that the president of the HRC did not even bother to do  the MINIMAL DUE DILIGENCE to screen Murungi for simple things like bias, conflict of interest, appearance of impartiality, neutrality, etc.

Indeed, it is highly likely Murungi was selected precisely because she can be trusted to deliver a body blow to Ethiopia on behalf of the terrorist TPLF come what may.

“R2P! Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!”

In the end, Murungi torpedoed the UN Human Rights Council with her blatant partisan support for terrorist TPLF.

Murungi had been on the Council for less than three months when the ICHREE report on Ethiopia was issued.

It is interesting that Murungi has a history of sabotaging human rights investigations.

Between 2009 and 2010, Murungi served as Vice Chairperson and Commissioner of the Kenya Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission in her own country Kenya.

That Commission was established after Kenya’s 2007 Presidential election which  sparked violent clashes over electoral fraud allegations.

In that violence, nearly 1,500 people were killed and almost 300,000 were forced to flee their homes.

Following the violence, a power-sharing coalition government was established which authorized the creation of a Truth, Justice, and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC).

The mandate of the TJRC was “to investigate and recommend appropriate action on “human rights abuses” committed between December 12, 1963 and February 28, 2008.” The TJRC was also tasked to establish as complete a picture as possible of the causes, nature and extent of the post-election violence.

As Vice Chairperson and Commissioner of the Kenya Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission, Murungi proved to be divisive and ineffective.

Murungi resigned claiming she “was unable to continue  given the public position I have expressed with regards to matters facing the Commission’s Chair.”

Murungi said she was resigning because the Commission’s Chair was “unfit to hold such an office due to his past record as a senior government official.”

However, the hypocrite Murungi did not refuse to accept nor offer to resign after her PAST RECORD showed she is a dyed-in-the-wool terrorist TPLF supporter!

So, what happened to the TJRC?

In its 2013, the TJRC reported, among many other things:

1) Between 1963 and 1978, the government of President Jomo Kenyatta was responsible for numerous gross violations of human rights including killings, torture, and collective punishment, denial of basic needs and arbitrary detention of political opponents and activists;

2) Between 1978 and 2002, the government of President Daniel Moi was responsible for numerous gross violations of human rights including unlawful detentions, widespread torture and ill-treatment of political opponents;

3) Between 2002 and 2008, the government of President Mwai Kibaki was responsible for numerous gross violations of human rights, including unlawful detentions.

4) Security operations in Northern Kenya were accompanied by systematic and widespread torture, rape and sexual violence against girls and women.

In spring 2009, the Kenyan Parliament turned down a Constitutional Amendment Bill for a Special Tribunal for post-election violence.

On March 31, 2010, the International Criminal Court (ICC) opened an investigation into the post-election violence.

Six individuals, including the deputy prime minister, an ex-minister, and an ex-police chief were ordered to appear before the Court in The Hague.

Ironically, while I engaged global public opinion to fully prosecute Kenyatta and Ruto before the ICC, Murungi did not utter a word!

Now, Murungi becomes a champion of human rights in Ethiopia while she callously turned a blind eye to the deaths of 1,500 Kenyans and displacement of 300 thousand of her own brothers and sisters!

Kenyan Nobel Laureate Wangari Maathai wrote:

“The real intention of the just-formed Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC) therefore, is to facilitate impunity, hoodwink and massage the victims and yet again, sweep the crimes under the carpet. None of the leaders has ever been made to account for crimes they commit against the state. Why now?

Radhika Coomaraswamy and the Myanmar hit job

Radhika Coomaraswamy, a Sri Lankan, is the third member of the Ratner Hit Team sent to Ethiopia.

Coomaraswamy is the former UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative on Children and Armed Conflict. She also served as Chairperson of the National Human Rights Commission in Sri Lanka from 2003-2006.

Coomaraswamy’s claim to fame is that she was the lead author of the 418-page Global Study on the Implementation of Resolution 1325 (full involvement of women in all efforts for maintaining and promoting peace and security) published in 2015.

In 2017, after alleged atrocities against the Rohingya people in Myanmar, Coomaraswamy was appointed a member of the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on Myanmar.

In 2018, the Coomaraswamy expert panel accused Myanmar authorities of committing

1) crimes against humanity including murder, imprisonment, enforced disappearance, torture, rape, sexual slavery and other forms of sexual violence, persecution, and enslavement;

2) crimes against humanity which meets the legal requirements of war crimes (murder, cruel treatment, outrages upon personal dignity, attacking civilians, displacing civilians, pillaging, attacking protected objects, taking hostages, sentencing or execution without due process);

3) rape and other forms of sexual violence on a massive scale; and

4) arbitrary and frequent denial of humanitarian assistance to people in need and blocking movement of relief personnel for long periods of time.

Coomaraswamy group “recommended prosecution of senior generals of the Myanmar military for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in an international criminal tribunal.”

Coomaraswamy was a UN Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women from 1994-2003.

In 1996, Coomaraswamy submitted an addendum to her report on violence against women to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, citing evidence that proved to be a hoax and a fabrication.

Coomaraswamy effectively committed academic fraud by using the fabricated evidence of Yoshida Seiji (who claimed to have worked during World War II as a labor mobilization manager and witnessed sexual exploitation (“comfort women) of Korean women by Japanese troops) to bolster her credentials as fighter for women’s rights.

What is extraordinary is the fact that in her investigation of human rights violations in Tigray region, Coomaraswamy reported no evidence of violations of the rights of children even though she was a celebrated UN Special Representative on Children and Armed Conflict.

Conscription of child soldiers by the TPLF has been documented extensively by the BBC and other sources.

I have documented with video evidence the top TPLF terrorist leader stating in an interview that “the war will be a people’s war, starting with children.”

 

Despite ample evidence of use of child soldiers by the terrorist TPLF, Coomaraswamy, Ratner and Murungi turned a blind eye, deaf ears and muted lips.

Ratner, Coomaraswamy, Murungi and the Ethiopia hit job

The mandate of the “International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia” is to

1) conduct a thorough and impartial investigation into allegations of violations and abuses since 3 November 2020 by all parties to the conflict;

2) establish the facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged violations and abuses, to collect and preserve evidence, to identify those responsible for future accountability efforts;

3) provide guidance on transitional justice, including accountability, reconciliation and

4) engage with all relevant stakeholders.

The main “conclusions” of the ICHREE Commission quoted directly from the “REPORT” are as follows:

1) The Commission finds reasonable grounds to believe that the ENDF shelled Mekelle on 28 November 2020, killing and injuring civilians and striking civilian objects days after Tigrayan forces had left the city with their assets.

2) The Commission finds reasonable grounds to believe that the ENDF conducted a drone strike against the Dedebit IDP camp on 7 January 2022, killing and injuring approximately 60 civilians and destroying civilian infrastructure.

3) The Commission finds reasonable grounds to believe that Tigrayan forces killed civilians and persons rendered hors de combat, raped, looted, and damaged or destroyed civilian infrastructure and property in Kobo and Chenna in late August and early September 2021.

4) The Commission finds reasonable grounds to believe that the ENDF, EDF, and Fano have committed widespread acts of rape and sexual violence against Tigrayan women and girls.

5) The Commission finds reasonable grounds allied regional State governments have implemented a widespread range of measures designed to systematically deprive the population of Tigray of material and services indispensable for its survival, including healthcare, shelter, water, sanitation, education and food.

The ICHREE report has been meticulously and rigorously refuted point-by-point by the Ethiopian Government.

The Ethiopian Government’s rebuttal is a tour-de-force of legal and methodological analysis.

I recommend the reader to review the rebuttal in its entirety.

Methodological flaws, failure to adhere to UN evidentiary standards and its own terms of reference render the ICHREE report useless

In light of the thorough rebuttal of the Ethiopian Government, I shall focus on some of the major methodological and technical legal issues concerning the ICHREE report.

1) The ICHREE asserts it conducted its investigation and prepared its report “with limited time, staffing and access to sites and documents” and had “to select a specific and manageable preliminary group of incidents and themes” in its investigation.

The ICHREE also claims to have applied the evidentiary standard of “reasonable grounds to believe” and conducted its investigation “in accordance with the practice of United Nations fact-finding and investigative bodies.”

As a technical evidentiary matter, the threshold “reasonable grounds to believe” standard is  problematic but applies in considering 1) whether a crime has been committed, and 2) whether the defendant is criminally liable. The standard further applies to infer mutually exclusive reasonable conclusions that a crime has been committed, and equally another reasonable conclusion a crime has not been committed.

The ICHREE’s report provides little or no explanation on its application of the “reasonable grounds to believe” standard and the specific investigative methods it used to collect and analyze evidence. It offers no indication on how to test the credibility of the “evidence” it collected and expects its vague and unsubstantiated conclusions to be accepted ex cathedra as infallible.

The Ratner-Murungi-Coomswarmy hit team reports it applied the “reasonable grounds to believe” standard in a “select specific and manageable group of incidents and themes for which it could complete investigations in two months with limited resources.”

The fact of the matter is that ICHREE only gives lip service to application of “reasonable grounds to believe” standard as the Ethiopian Government Response has shown in its meticulous rebuttal.

The ICHREE report fails to meet the minimum threshold for “reasonable grounds to believe” as it provides little or no explanation on the circumstances of the crimes, the time and date or duration of alleged crimes corroboration or verification.

The glaring omissions and methodological flaws of the ICHREE can best be seen in comparison to the work of the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC)/Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) Joint Investigation.

That investigation involved field work of nearly four months in various locations throughout Ethiopia under challenging circumstances with nearly 270 confidential interviews with victims and 64 meetings with a variety of stakeholders.

The governments of Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States “commended OHCHR and EHRC for their impartial and transparent work.”

Indeed, the Ethiopian Government accepted that report and is implementing its recommendations.

The Ethiopian Government has rejected the Ratner hit team’s report in its entirety.

2) The ICHREE was mandated to “conduct a thorough and impartial investigation into allegations of violations and abuses committed since 3 November 2020 by all parties to the conflict, by building upon the report of the Office of the High Commissioner and the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission. The ICHREE failed to honor its mandate and ended up preparing a report that not only contradicts but also trashes the highly commendable 2021 joint OHCHR and EHRC report.

3) The ICHREE failed to honor its own terms of reference (the document which sets the objectives, scope of work, activities, task to be performed, respective responsibilities, etc.)  which provides the ICHREE will  “build upon the findings, conclusions, and recommendations of the report of the JIT (2021 OHCHR and EHRC findings) in a way that adds value and avoids unnecessary duplication of effort without limiting the temporal or geographic scope above.”

In its rush to judgment, the ICHREE completely ignored the 2021 report and findings, choosing to re-investigate events already investigated rigorously and given conclusion.

4) The ICHREE’s admission that it conducted “most of its interviews remotely” (virtually) and used “satellite imagery, print and audio-visual material, and open-source information” as evidence that meets the standard of reasonable grounds to believe” is outlandish,  outrageous and shocking.

The ICHREE’s random and causal use of satellite imagery, print and audio-visual material, and open-source information in clear disregard and flagrant violation of the 2015 UN Commissions of Inquiry and Fact-finding Missions: Guidance and Practice (see pp. 40-48). The “open source” information used by ICHREE is largely Western fake news and yellow journalism. The UN Guideline requires corroboration and independent verification of information obtained in an investigation, which the ICHREE report disregards.

5) In flagrant departure from the UN Guidance and Practice, the ICHREE allegation ENDF “soldiers committed extensive extrajudicial killings, arbitrary detention, and looting” and “used civilian objects for military purposes and restricted access to medical treatment” was unsupported by a single witness testimony.

6) The ICHREE aims to create moral equivalency by dignifying the TPLF terrorist group, declared as such by the Ethiopian parliament, militarily  occupying Tigray as “the Regional Government of Tigray”. The ICHREE aims to lift the image of the terrorist group in the eyes of global public opinion by sanitizing it from a terrorist group to a “government.”

7) To add insult to injury and beyond the scope of its mandate and authority, the ICHREE dictates: “That the Inter-Governmental Authority for Development (IGAD), the African Union Peace and Security Council, and UN Security Council place the situation in Ethiopia on their agendas and take action aimed at restoring peace, stability and security in the region, thereby preventing further violations and abuses of international human rights law and humanitarian law.” (Boldface added.)

AFTER ALL IS SAID AND DONE, THE SINGLE MOST OUTRAGEOUS ELEMENT OF THE ICHREE REPORT IS ITS RECOMMENDATION OF R2P (responsibility to protect.)

KAARI MURUNGI FINALLY GOT HER WISH!

Million-dollar question: What will happen to the ICHREE report?

What happened to the UNHCR report of Cambodia?

What happened to the UNHCR Myanmar report?

What happened to the UNHCR Sri Lankan report?

The ICHREE has requested a one-year extension of its term. It is said a decision could be made on October 6, 2022,

The fact of the matter is with the Government of Ethiopia’s complete rejection of the report along with many other countries including China, Russia, India, it will prove to be a flash in the pan.

The fact of the matter is also that the US, EU, UN and certain Western European countries established to pressure and embarrass the Ethiopian government and force it to negotiate with the terrorist TPLF.  They also hoped they could use the report to advocate global sanctions against Ethiopia.

The fact of the matter is that the US, EU, UN and certain Western European countries wanted to use the report for R2P, that is humanitarian military action in Ethiopia to protect the terrorist TPLF.

None of the above seem likely.

Joe Biden, the great war monger, seems to accept the reality of AFRICAN SOLUTIONS FOR AFRICAN PROBLEMS.

 

 

The weaponization of the UNHCR as a neocolonial tool has not gone unnoticed by African leaders.

The weaponization of the UNHCR to criminalize African leaders as human rights outlaws with a long-term agenda to undermine African sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity is not lost on Africans.

Last month, South African Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor gave Blinken the dress down when he visited South Africa last month.

Because when we believe in freedom – as I’m saying, it’s freedom for everybody – you can’t say because Africa is doing this, you will then be punished by the United States…. One thing I definitely dislike is being told `either you choose this or else.’ When a minister speaks to me like that … I definitely will not be bullied in that way, nor would I expect any other African country worth its salt to agree to be [so] treated.

During the interactive dialogue in the General Assembly over the ICHREE, 32 countries delivered their statements.

There were 13 countries that rejected the ICHREE report and 19 that supported it.

Countries rejecting the ICHREE report argued:

The Council is using the opportunity to advance a particular political agenda.

The report manifestly lacks neutrality, impartiality and rationality.

The report is a significant trespass on Ethiopia’s sovereignty.

The Ethiopian Government’s peace initiatives are to be commended and solutions should be sought only through the African Union.

The international community should support the Ethiopian Government’s efforts find lasting solutions and not meddle in Ethiopia’s internal affairs.

The Ratner Mercenary Group and monetization of human suffering

The Ratner Mercenary Group is in it for the money! It is strictly business!

They have a one-size fits all boilerplate human rights report which they will customize for their clients based on a narrative that is given to them.

They will cut and paste and modify their standard templates to deliver whatever report their clients demand of them.

A comparison of the Cambodia, Sri Lanka and Ethiopia reports shows how the Ratner Hit Team recycles the same template over and over to line their pockets.

The Ratner Mercenary Group is available for hire by anyone who is willing to pay them top dollar for their services.

Their motto, “Have law books, will travel anywhere in the world for a hit job in the name of human rights.”

Black ants, red ants, lawbook-toting hit teams and

Ants are a source of wisdom in African folktales as strong, hardworking, cooperative and determined creatures.

“Two ants can carry one grasshopper.” “When ants unite, they can lift an elephant.”

There is a putatively African folktale about ants that is apt to Ethiopia’s current situation.

It is said if you collect 100 black ants and 100 red ants and put them in a glass jar, nothing will happen. They will go about their business.

But if you take the jar, shake it violently and leave it on the table, the ants will start attacking and killing each other.

Red ants believe the black ants are the enemy and vice versa.

But the real enemy is the one who shook the jar.

So it is in Ethiopia.

There are 120 million hardworking, prosperity seeking, cooperative and mutually supporting ants in Ethiopia.

Then come the jar shakers with their hit men and women toting the gospel of human rights and preaching fire and brimstone to Ethiopians.

I find James Russell Lowell’s poem “The resent Crisis” appropriate in understanding the lies, damned lies and disinformation used by the new, new West to demonize Ethiopia, dehumanize, brutalize and polarize its people and weaponize human rights to keep Ethiopia in perpetual poverty:

When a deed is done for Freedom, through the broad earth’s aching breast
Runs a thrill of joy prophetic, trembling on from east to west,

Careless seems the great Avenger; history’s pages but record
One death-grapple in the darkness ‘twixt old systems and the Word;
Truth forever on the scaffold, Wrong forever on the throne,—
Yet that scaffold sways the future, and, behind the dim unknown,
Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own.

Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own ETHIOPIA!

WE WON’T BACK DOWN. WE WILL STAND OUR GROUND.

ETHIOPIA SHALL PROPSPER. ETHIOPIANS SHALL LIVE IN PEACE.

ETHIOPIA SHALL PERSEVERE!  ETHIOPIA SHALL OVERCOME!

ETHIOPIA SHALL PREVAIL!

Because Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own ETHIOPIA!



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TPLF Remains Hell-bent on Destroying Ethiopia’s Societal Foundation: Deputy PM & FM Demeke

5 mins read

Addis Ababa September 25/2022 (ENA) The criminal group, TPLF, remains hell-bent on destroying the social foundation of Ethiopia, Deputy Prime Minister & Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonen said at UNGA77.

At the General Debate of the 77th Session of the United Nations General Assembly, Deputy Prime Minister & Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonen said that the terrorist TPLF group still remains hell-bent on destabilizing the social foundations colluding with external actors opposing the development aspirations of the country.

Yet, the Government of Ethiopia has earnestly tried to avoid this conflict; and regrettably, the efforts to prevent the conflict from igniting were not successful, he added.

However, thanks to the resolve and determination of Ethiopia, the designs of our adversaries against our progress have been frustrated, he underscored.

“We have also paved a path for peace and recovery relying on the ability of the peace-loving people of Ethiopia to reconcile, make peace among ourselves and start the process of healing,” he said.

Any other approach, including the politicization of human rights and unilateral coercive measures will not yield any positive outcome, Demeke stressed.

May be an image of 3 people and indoor

The full text attached bellow :

H.E. Demeke Mekonnen, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia At The General Debate of the 77th Session of the United Nations General Assembly

Mr. President,

We are at a historic crossroads in the evolution of our multilateral system. Humanity is facing multiple and complex challenges, ranging from climate change, extreme poverty, conflicts, terrorism, and geopolitical tensions.

The consequences of these global challenges are of epic proportions and leave adverse socio-political impacts across the world. Nevertheless, international cooperation is not at a level near the gravity of the challenges.

Although climate change and the resulting extreme weather conditions occur throughout the globe, the crisis largely affects the minimally resilient and the least responsible for causing the problem. A case in point is our region, the Horn of Africa, which in some parts is hit by record-level drought while sustaining extreme flooding in other parts.

Mr. President

Climate disaster and its insufferable impacts are preventable. I, therefore, make an urgent call to all states gathered here to translate rhetoric into action. We must realize our climate finance commitments to build resilience and mitigate impact. We should act to meet our emission reduction targets. This requires focused coordination, non-politicization, avoidance of securitization, and good faith cooperation among all stakeholders.

I must emphasize, Africa is not responsible for the historic emissions that caused the climate crisis. Yet, we are the ones making the most tangible contribution to mitigate the impacts of climate change. In Ethiopia, our afforestation program – the Ethiopian Green Legacy Initiative, saw the planting of billions of seedlings and created a strong culture of afforestation. We are also on a path to sustainable energy transformation and green growth. These proactive programs deserve recognition and tangible support.

Mr. President,

We have a shared planet and a common destiny. Overcoming our collective challenges require concerted effort and trusted global leadership. We are gathered here because our forefathers, learning from the tragic episodes of human history, decided to establish the United Nations as the guardian of peace.

However, we are yet to achieve true universality in the main organs of the United Nations. Africa has no permanent seat at the UN Security Council. Our quest for African solutions to African problems is yet to be given the respect and support it deserves. We believe, these considerations underpin the credibility of the Council in the continent.

African problems are sustainably addressed when approached in the true context of the region and take full account of the strategic interests and aspirations of the countries concerned. It is only when we do these and uphold regional solutions; we could start reducing the proliferation and over extended stay of African issues in the UN Security Council.

Mr. President,

For the past four years, Ethiopia has made significant progress in its socio-economic development, and democratization. These years have also been compounded by challenges that tested our survival as a nation.

In November 2020, the most heinous and treasonous attack was waged against the Ethiopian National Defense Forces that protected not only the peace and stability of Ethiopia but also helped keep peace in other countries on behalf of the United Nations and the African Union.

The criminal group that remains hell-bent in destroying societal foundation of our country colluded with external actors opposed to our development aspirations. The insecurity this group created has been very tragic and costly. Yet, the Government of Ethiopia has earnestly tried to avoid this conflict. Regrettably, our efforts to prevent the conflict from igniting were not successful.

Thanks to the resolve and determination of Ethiopians, the designs of our adversaries against Ethiopia’s progress have been frustrated. We have also paved a path for peace and recovery relying on the ability of the peace-loving people of Ethiopia to reconcile, make peace among ourselves and start the process of healing.

We thus call for support to our agenda for peace, reconciliation, and reconstruction. We also urge respect for and support to the AU-led peace process. Any other approach, including the politicization of human rights and unilateral coercive measures will not yield any positive outcome.

Mr. President,

The past year has also been a milestone for my country and we believe to the entire Nile River Basin. Our project, the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, commenced lighting our homes and fulfilling our inter-generational aspiration.

All the glory and gratitude go to the people of Ethiopia who financed this project. The dividend goes far and wide to the entire region.

Taking this opportunity, I reiterate Ethiopia’s commitment to equity and cooperation in the use of transboundary rivers and shared prosperity with all riparian countries. We will continue in good faith the trilateral negotiation under the auspices of the African Union to reach a mutually acceptable outcome.

Mr. President,

Over the past three years, the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals encountered serious setbacks. The global COVID-19 pandemic has tested our health systems.

Global trade in goods and services was halted causing a great deal of loss to our economies. The response by international financial institutions has been below the required level and did not account for the special vulnerability of least developed countries.

As the Secretary General of the United Nations put it, it is necessary to “turbo charge” the implementation of the SDGs. We call for enhanced focus and support to national efforts to improve agricultural and manufacturing productivity, increase investment, facilitate technology transfer, foster fair trade, redouble debt cancellation and restructuring, and enhance international finance for national priority projects. Furthermore, we should enhance the efforts to combat illicit financial flows, unlawful extraction and trade of minerals, and corruption.

Africa’s youthful population and its vast natural resources should be a source of growth and better jobs. Africa can be the showcase for green and sustainable development. It can feed and power itself and the world.

This requires reform of the global financial architecture to ensure more equitable, speedy, and collaborative cooperation based on the needs and potential of least developed countries. More importantly, we must actively support governments that work to create a conducive environment for the prosperity of their countries. In addition, Africa’s effort to chart its destiny must not be complicated by big power competition.

Mr. President,

Allow me to conclude by re-emphasizing the need to scale-up international cooperation. The gravity of the challenges we face today demand us to come together in search of collective solutions. We need more, not less, multilateralism. We shall continue to uphold our cardinal principles of independence, impartiality, integrity, noninterference, sovereign equality, and non-selectivity to maintain a working multilateral system rooted in the Charter of the United Nations.

We need to reform our global institutions to reflect current realities. We need to make them more representative and responsive to the demands of the time. Only through genuine solidarity and concerted action could we ensure collective security and prosperity.

I thank you all for your attention and wish you, Mr. President, a successful term of office.

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HR Experts Commission Report Weak as Numerous Empirical Studies Exist on Widespread TPLF Atrocities: Prof. Fitz-Gerald

2 mins read

September 25/2022 (ENA) The International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia (ICHREE) report issued recently is weak because there were numerous empirical studies that have been done on widespread TPLF atrocities, International Security Professor Ann Fitz-Gerald said.

In an exclusive interview with ENA, she stated that the people in Afar and Amhara regions were deeply affected, and the evidence was widespread all over the places.

The professor said the implementation of rule of law must be based on evidence and enabling space for other evidence must be collected, forensic undertaken, et cetera. Yet this has not just happened.

“This emerged as very obvious weakness of the report, especially there were numerous empirical studies that have been done on widespread TPLF large atrocities. The implementation of rule of law must be based on evidence and enabling space for other evidence must be collected, forensic  undertaken, et cetera; and it has not just happened yet.”

Fitz-Gerald explained that when she had traveled across Afar and Amhara regions, she saw people in areas like northern and South West Wollo, and Northern Afar deeply affected.

“The evidence was widespread all over the places. Listening to how the fighting has impacted families, and it is very sad to not get into Tigray as well and speak to families actually in the region as well as families who have fled and come over the border,” the professor added.

She believes that the research had some issues concerning methodology and investigation to human rights atrocities and violations.

“Comprehensive studies are necessary that look at the affected conflict space; and there has been an error I believe on the part of the international civil society to refer to this conflict as the Tigray conflict when most of the fighting and most of the battle space has been located in Amhara and Afar (regions). Fellow Tigrayans are deeply affected by this conflict, there is no doubt about that. But, the actual war fighting has been taking place in Amhara and Afar.”

According to her, it is very questionable based on that evidence as to why this issue is to be referred to as Tigray conflict. “I think there is a swell of TPLF propaganda; and the TPLF affiliates want to project that message so that the attention will come to Tigray. But, this is a conflict in northern Ethiopia and I think some international policy leaders have changed the narrative to reflect that.”

The International Security Professor noted also that this human right commission didn’t have a large mandate and huge level of support that some similar studies had.

“When we don’t have a huge amount of support on large mandate, this becomes reflected in the resources made available for such studies to be carried out,” she said.

It is to be recalled that the Ethiopian government categorically rejected the report of the International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia (ICHREE).

The commission presented its initial findings on the conflict in northern Ethiopia with the intention to demonize the Government of Ethiopia.

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Meskel: The Finding of the True Cross

4 mins read

BY SOLOMON DIBABA

The Ethiopian New Year comes up with various religious and cultural celebrations which are marked indoors among families and outdoors with the entire public in mammoth paraphernalia Meskel, the holiday celebrated in commemoration of the Finding of the True Cross.

This year Meskel is celebrated in Ethiopia amidst two sets of wars that were waged on the people and government of Ethiopia by terrorist TPLF and at a point in time when the country is facing huge rounds of political pressure from the western countries who wish to reinstall to power a terrorist group which is now entrenched in Mekelle. Ethiopia is still grappling with the after effects of COVID-19 and the drought that occurred in different parts of the country.

Meskel, meaning the Cross in Amharic is an annual religious Ethiopian holiday among Orthodox Christian believers and the first outdoor feast in the Church calendar. Meskel takes place on the 27th of September, or 28th during a leap year, Gregorian calendar.

In addition to its religious values, Meskel coincides with the end of the main rainy season (June to September) and the onset of Ethiopian spring in which fields and meadows in the country are carpeted with mesmerizing endemic daisies, locally known as adey abeba, with their captivating yellow colors which majestically envelop the Ethiopian fields. The daisies prevail for only two months and disappear over the next ten months to reappear at the same rainy season the next year.

Meskel is also a time when many urbanites return to villages. Neighborhoods and villages celebrate Demera . In the morning, the faithful paint their foreheads with the ash from the burned bone fire as a gesture of good will.  

The feast of Meskel started on the 26th of September with the celebration of the Demera, a ceremonial burning of a large bonfire. It is a special event that is conducted on the eve of Meskel to recall the smoke that supposedly led Empress Helena to the site of the True Cross.

The True Cross, upon which Christ had been crucified, was thrown in a ditch or well, and then covered with litters, until Empress Helena, mother of Constantine, the first Christian Emperor of Rome, discovered the place where three crosses that were believed to be used at the crucifixion of Jesus and two of the crosses where the two thieves were executed with Him.

Empress Helena had a revelation in a dream to make a bonfire and that the smoke would show her where the true cross was buried. So she ordered the people of Jerusalem to bring wood and make a huge pile. After adding frankincense to it the bonfire was lit and the smoke raised high up to the sky and returned to the ground, exactly to the spot where the True Cross had been buried.

The national feast of Demera is held at Meskel Square, a huge square in Addis Ababa, on September 26, in commemoration the Finding of the True Cross.

At the Meskel Square, in the afternoon, dozens of Sunday school students and members of the clergy move through the square singing spiritual songs that last for hours. As darkness begins to set in, the demera is set ablaze.

The following day, the official day of the feast of the finding of the True Cross, Ethiopians attend liturgy and a feast and celebrate with family and friends. Many use the ashes from the demera mark a shape of cross on their foreheads.

The Demera festival of the Meskel holiday, whose celebration dates back to 1600 years, has been registered as world intangible heritage by UNESCO in December 2013, as the first intangible Ethiopian heritage.

During Meskel festival, a special species of birds known as ‘YeMeskel Wof –Meskel’s Bird’ also appears to be visible. Generally, the word ‘YeMeskel Wof’ is used to call the four bird species, namely the northern red bishops, indigo-birds, whydah and widow birds, and yet it has more than ten species under it. These birds are also enjoyed by bird watchers during Meskel.

These birds are endemic to Ethiopia, and do not migrate from one place to another as other birds do. As September, Ethiopia’s first month, is their reproduction season, the colors of their feathers gets changed in order to attract opposite sexes. Due to this change, it looks that they are new birds that appear only at this time of the year.

Meskel also marks a tourist season in Ethiopia. Thousands of tourists from many countries converge on Ethiopia to enjoy the ceremonies during the Meskel celebrations.

Meskel is celebrated as a grand religious occasion among the Ethiopian Orthodox believers because it is believed that a part of the True Cross has been brought to Ethiopia. It is said to be kept at Amba Gishen, which itself has a shape of a cross.

The cross has a special meaning for Ethiopian Orthodox Christians. Christians of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church dangle the symbol of the cross on their neck.

Priests carry various types of cross with their ceremonial staff in conducting mass and other forms of prayers including a ceremonial blessings and sanctification of holy waters meant for healing the sick and casting out evil spirits from persons suspected of being possessed by demons.

Mario De Salvo says that “There is no country in the world that matches Ethiopia in the number of forms and types of its crosses. Ever since Ethiopia’s conversion to Christianity, the cross has appeared almost universally, not only as a liturgical instrument in churches and monasteries, but also in common devotion and in daily life.”

From the cross stamped on the Aksumite coins, depicted in architecture and illustrated in the ancient illuminated codices to the astylar, manual or pectoral crosses made and forged respectively for liturgical functions, (Mario Da Silva, Crosses of Ethiopia, 2006)

There are various types of crosses that are used on various religious and cultural occasions. The most popular ones are the crosses of Lalibela, Axum and Gondar. Tourists from various countries visiting Ethiopia make sure that they purchase various types of Ethiopian crosses that are made from silver and bronze, as well as carved from wood and marble.

This year’s Meskel celebration also coincides with World Tourism Day marked with the theme “rethinking tourism. “ Thousands of tourists from all over the world are expected to arrive in Addis Ababa and regional towns to mark the event. Meskel is a season of reunion of families who were separated during the rainy reason due to torrential rains and over flooded rivers. At this point in time, all Ethiopians who celebrate Meskel must remember the plight of our citizens who are currently displaced due to the war inflicted on the country by terrorist TPLF and its supporters here and abroad.

Despite the ordeals the nation had faced over the last two years, Ethiopia is marking Meskel and World Tourism Day with full optimism for promising economic self-reliance expected through import substitution of commodities like wheat through a bumper harvest in agriculture. Ethiopia has become a pace setter in National Green Legacy Initiative by planting more than 20 billion trees across the country and has managed to fill GERD for the third round simultaneously generating 750MW hydroelectric power from two sets of turbines.

Although the road appears to be torturous, a bright future is on the horizon for the nation.

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ADB President Says Implementation of Ethiopia’s Seqota Declaration Model for Other Nations

1 min read

Addis Ababa September 24/2022/ENA/ The African Development Bank (ADB) President, Akinwumi Adesina said Ethiopia’s implementation of Seqota Declaration is a model for other countries.

It is to be recalled that in 2015, the Government of Ethiopia made a high level fifteen-year commitment to end stunting in children under two years by 2030.

This commitment, known as the Seqota Declaration, is being implemented through a multi-sectoral program involving nine different sector ministries.  

The Ethiopian government and ADB hosted a high-level presidential dialogue on nutrition to encourage collective action by African leaders to end childhood stunting, boost human capital, and promote development while sharing Ethiopia’s experience in implementing the Seqota Declaration in New York.

During the occasion, ADB President, Akinwumi Adesina, said by banding together, “we can solve the issue of child stunting in Africa. This project will receive 4 billion USD from the bank.”

The president also praised Ethiopia’s government for its success in putting the Seqota Declaration into practice, saying it “could serve as a model for other nations and that it would soon be implemented in six other African nations.”

The Sekota Declaration is assisting mothers and children in getting nourishing food, according to Demeke Mekonen, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, and it will be fully implemented by 2030.

Additionally, he said that the declaration aims to end child stunting in the nation.

In order to ensure that the declaration serves its intended purpose, top management has been closely monitoring and supervising its implementation, according to Demeke.

Demeke further stated that more than 110 thousand children were saved in the Amhara and Tigray regions within six years of the implementation, citing a study conducted by the John Hopkins University on the program implementation.  

The Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister outlined four crucial actions that improved the Sekota Declaration’s outcomes: political leadership and budget allocation, financial and technical support from development partners, implementation of problem-solving techniques, and gender-based feedback.

By making nutrition a top national priority and establishing effective multi-sectoral nutrition programs in each of their respective nations, African Heads of State, the African Development Bank Group, the African Union mission to the United Nations, and partners pledged to invest in and accelerate progress toward ending stunting on the continent.

The meeting was by several government leaders including the president of Malawi, the vice president of Tanzania, the vice president of Uganda, and representatives from donor organizations.

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Ethiopia Says Global Partnership that Respects Sovereignty Critical for Development

1 min read

Addis Ababa September 24/2022/ENA/ Ethiopia said it’s critical to have a global partnership that respects sovereignty and national ownership, as well as a multilateral system that effectively works for the most vulnerable countries.

A high-level meeting on Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and landlocked developing countries (LLDCs) was held at the 77th session of the General Assembly New York.

Participants discussed the unique challenges facing LDCs and LLDCs and the best way to strengthen partnerships and cooperation to address those challenges for the nations in these groups.

Director General of International Organizations at the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ayele Lyre, claimed that his country made courageous decisions to open its financial market to foreign investment, which resulted in measurable GDP growth, an increase in export revenues, the creation of 3 million jobs in a year, and the mobilization of domestic resources to finance pro-poor programs.

According to Ayele the Doha Programme of Action, which stressed the significance of renewed and strengthened global commitments with the aim of achieving rapid, sustainable, and inclusive recovery and resilience, provided an important blueprint for LDCs to overcome the effects of the global crises.

He elaborated that LDCs, including Ethiopia, have enormous development potential to contribute to global growth, driven by committed leadership and energized by the youth population.

While Ethiopia, like other least developed countries, is mindful of its internal challenges, including poverty, inflation, unemployment, and food and energy insecurity, he stressed.

Ayele underlined it’s “critical to have a global partnership that respects sovereignty and national ownership, as well as a multilateral system that effectively works for the most vulnerable countries.”

In a video message, Secretary-General António Guterres advocated for “bold investments” in health, education, and social protection systems; financial architecture reform; job-creation, particularly in digital, care, and green economies; gender equality for girls and women; and support to end fossil fuel reliance and jump-start a renewable energy transition.

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